Thailand has reported the first-ever case of Coronavirus in which the person contracted the virus from a dead body. A medical examiner contracted the virus from his dead patient. Now safety measures are being designed to protect morgue and funeral home workers amid the pandemic.
“This is the first report on COVID-19 infection and death among medical personnel in a Forensic Medicine unit.” – revealed a journal of forensic and legal medicine study.
“The disinfection procedure used in operation rooms might be applied in pathology/forensic units too. At present, there is no data on the exact number of COVID-19 contaminated corpses since it is not a routine practice to examine for COVID-19 in dead bodies in Thailand.”
Thailand has reported approximately 2,579 cases of COVID-19. All across the globe, a concerning number of 1.9 million is making rounds.
Source: The New York Times
“Not just the medical examiners, but morgue technicians and the people in funeral homes need to take extra care. It is a real concern.” - said Angelique Corthals, a professor of pathology at CUNY's John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
It’s quite scary as very little information is available on how long the virus stays in the dead body. In fact, nobody is entirely sure whether or not you can contract the virus from a corpse.
“Anyone coming into contact with a COVID19 positive body, alive or dead, should be using personal protective equipment to prevent exposure.” - Told the health policy expert Summer Johnson McGee to Buzzfeed in an email.
“Autopsies and subsequent investigations present real risks for coroners to acquire COVID-19. We need to take care of the people who take care of the dead.” – She continued.